Lower Platte North NRD
June 27, 2016 5:00 PM
Water Committee Meeting
1. REGULATORY
1.a. GROUND WATER MANAGEMENT AREA
1.a.1. Variance Request in the Hydrologically Connected Area (Limited Development Area)
Rationale

The District received one new well variance application for 80 acres in the Weston subarea.

The District has a total of 99 applications for 6,147.61 acres.

 

1.a.2. Variance Requests in the Non-Hydrologically Connected Area (Normal Development Area)
Rationale

No new updates.

1.a.3. Variance Requests in the Restricted Development Areas
Rationale

No new updates.

1.a.4. Well Permit Program
1.a.4.A. Well Permits Approved
Rationale

2 new permits were approved since the last Committee meeting.

Landowner Number of Wells Number of New Irrigated Acres Type of Well County Subarea
Fremont Family YMCA 1 0 Dewatering (Permanent) Dodge Fremont
Jeffery Temme 1 0 Irrigation (New) Boone Upper Newman Grove





 

 

The total number of approved permits for 2016 is 7.

Location of Approved Well Permits for 2016:  Correct as of 6/27/2016

 

County

 

Irrigation - New

 

Irrigation - Replacement

 

Stock

 

Commercial

 

Municipal

 

Other

 

Total

Butler 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Colfax 0 1 0 0 0 0 1
Dodge 0 3 0 0 0 1 4
Boone 1 0 0 0 0 0 1
Madison 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Platte 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Saunders 1 0 0 0 0 0 1
Total 2 4 0 0 0 1 7

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1.a.5. Special Quantity Subareas
1.a.5.a. AEM flights in SQS
Rationale

AGF expects the AEM flights in our SQS areas to begin around July 18th, but it could be a little sooner or later depending on weather.  They expect to do the work for LLNRD around July 13th and assume they will do the Platte-Colfax SQS area (SQS #2) right after that.  No flight details yet on the Butler-Saunders SQS.  It could be right after SQS #2 or after other LENRD flights, which means it would be later in the month.

Flight line spacing in SQS #2 will be 1/3 mile, which is what NRD staff were hoping for.  Flight line spacing in SQS #1 will be 1 and 1/2 mile spacing, with the tighter spacing along the western and southern portion of this area.

The invoice and contract agreement are attached.  AGF is requesting an advance payment of $125,000 to pay operating cost for the helicopter and its crew.  The LPNNRD was successful in obtaining a Water Sustainability Grant from DNR for a total of $416,666, of which the grant will pay 60% or $250,000.

Recommended Motion

To approve advanced payment to Aqua Geo Frameworks (AGF) of $125,000 as part for the airborne electromagnetic flights in both Special Quantity Subareas of the LPNNRD

Actions Taken

Motion Passed:  To approve advanced payment to Aqua Geo Frameworks (AGF) of $125,000 as part for the airborne electromagnetic flights in both Special Quantity Subareas of the LPNNRD passed with a motion by Joe Birkel and a second by Mr. Robert Meduna.

1.a.5.b. Butler-Saunders SQS (SQS #1)
Rationale

 #1  (Butler-Saunders)

There are 30 irrigation wells -- water level was measured in 28 of these wells in 2015.  25 of these have a flow meter; the other five wells were not used in 2015.  Letter for non-use in 2016 has been mailed to those without flow meters.  One letter was returned in today’s mail.

=====================================

Larry Ratkovec called this afternoon (June 27, 2016) with concerns regarding his domestic well and the start of high capacity irrigation wells pumping.  Five of these wells are within one mile of his house.  He lives in this SQS and his domestic well is in the NE¼SE¼ of section 35-T15N-R4E.  During this past weekend he did not have enough water to run his six pop-up lawn sprinklers as his well shut down several times.

=====================================

Greg Fujan has talked with Director McDermott regarding his irrigation well, G-135952, in this SQS – about petitioning his well out of this area.  Three attachments:

  1. Aerial photo from Well permit LPN-005-742 (G-135952) / Section 25, T15N, R5E
  2. Well logs for three wells: 
    • G-123366 (Mayer – domestic);
    • G-135952 (Fujan – irrigation);
    • G-067804 (Kellner – irrigation, east of SQS #1)
  3. Map of SQS #1

Mr Fujan attended the Water Committee meeting.  His concern was that his well which is within the SQS area is under pumping restrictions while his neighbors well about 0.6 miles away to the east is not.  He contends both wells are in the same aquifer and therefore he should not have pumping restrictions placed on his well.

The NRD has only one summer measurement from his well, which was taken last year when we had exception wet conditions.  The AEM flights are scheduled for July of this year, but the final report is not due until August 2017.  Whether or not a Section of land is in or out of an SQS depends primarily on the geology and the degree of ground water energy level decline in mid-summer.

The Water Committee took no action.

=====================================

 

1.a.5.c. Platte-Colfax SQS (SQS #2) Flow Meters
Rationale

Staff have been in field getting flow meter information, water levels, and talking with producers.  Benel reports that he is seeing Senninger propeller flow meters on several installations.

 

1.a.5.D. LPNNRD SQS Operator Certification Classes
Rationale

Thursday June 23, 2016 was the fourth and final class for operators in the Platte-Colfax SQS area (SQS #2). This class was held that evening at the LPNNRD office in Wahoo.  The expected producers (seven) were in attendance and this should be the last of the operators that needed to have the class.  Pink sheets and permission sheets continue to be received in the mail, which allow the LPNNRD to measure the ground water energy level in their irrigation wells.

 

1.a.6. Lower Platte River Basin Water Management Plan Coalition (LPRBC)
Rationale

The next LPRBC Managers meeting is set for July 6, 2016 at LPNNRD starting at 11:00 am.

 

1.a.7. Voluntary Integrated Water Management Plan - LENRD and LPNNRD
Rationale

Angle is finishing an update of the V-IMP goals and objectives reviewed at the last Water Committee and Board plus the V-IMP Plan.  These will be forwarded to Olsson Associates and DNR for their review.

 

Steps for approval of LPNNRD V-IMP

Water Comm. and Board approval of Goals, Objectives,

and Action Items (G,O,AI of V-IMP)

      Done

Submit to Olsson Assoc. and DNR of revised G,O,AI of V-IMP

as well as edited Plan.

     Pending

Review and final comments by Stakeholders Comm.  
Review and approval of Water Comm. and Board of entire V-IMP  
Submit to DNR for their final review   
Hold public hearings  
Final approval of V-IMP  

 

1.a.8. Cost Share Programs
1.a.8.A. Irrigation Well Sample Kits
Rationale

Sampling kits for irrigation wells are usually mailed in June to area producers.

 

1.a.8.B. Domestic Well Sample Kits
Rationale

No new requests.

 

1.a.8.C. Nebraska Agricultural Water Management Network (NAWMN)
Rationale

Eight producers have ordered for 2016 in our NAWMN program.  Aaron Nygren (Colfax County Extension Educator) is delivering the equipment to producers and guiding them in its installation.

 

1.a.9. Bellwood Phase 2 Area
Rationale

2016 is the fourteenth year for this Phase 2 Area.  Phase 2 information packets with order forms have been mailed to producers.

 

1.a.10. Richland - Schuyler Phase 2 Area
Rationale

2016 is the first year of this Phase 2 Area.  This Phase area is the 10 sections immediately north of the new Richland-Schuyler Phase 3 area.

1.a.11. Richland - Schuyler Phase 3 Area
Rationale

2016 is the first year of this Phase 3 Area.  This Phase 3 area went into effect September 1, 2015.  The 55 sections of this area first went into a Phase 2 Area in 2004.  

1.a.12. LPNNRD Certification
1.a.12.A. LPNNRD Operator Certification Classes
Rationale

No on-line test requests have been made since the last committee meeting and no on-line tests have been completed in June.

 

1.a.13. Certifying Acres in Saunders and Dodge Counties
Rationale

Poole has received most of the acre certification forms from Dodge and Saunders County's landowners.  Only seven individuals remain and these are still filling out the forms and need to send them in. 

To date, no 'notice to cease and desist orders' have been necessary, but this depends on the final seven landowners to get those reports submitted.

1.b. CHEMIGATION
Rationale

For 2016 we have 478 renewals and 56 new permit applications for a current total of 534.  A total of 33 permits have lapsed or were not renewed by the June 1st deadline.

Summer chemigation inspections are listed below:

 

 

Number to be inspected this summer

Number inspected

Number approved

Number and reason not approved

Renewal

~188

47

47

mainline 0

interlock 0

not ready 0

New

56

31

31

mainline 0

interlock 0

not ready 0

 

The breakdown, by county for the 56 new chemigation permit applications, are listed below:

 County New Chemigation Applications 
 Boone
 Butler 11 
 Colfax
 Dodge 11 
 Madison
 Platte
 Saunders 17 

 

 

The breakdown, by county for the 478 renewal chemigation permits, are listed below:

 County  Number of Renewals
 Boone  50
 Butler 64
 Colfax 23
 Dodge 86
 Madison 6
 Platte 81
 Saunders 168

 

1.c. LIVESTOCK WASTE PERMITS
Rationale

The LPNNRD has received two livestock permit applications from DEQ since the last Water Committee meeting.

 Name Livestock  Type of Permit  Legal Description  County 

Sobota Farms LLC

493 Road L

Schuyler NE 68661

Swine 4,800 

to 5,000 head

or (2,000 A.U.)

Expansion on existing DEQ permit

 

NE1/4, SE1/4, Section 10, T18N, R2E

NW1/4, NE1/4, Section 10, T18N, R2E 

Colfax

 

Mead Cattle Company

1344 County Road 10

Mead NE 68041

Cattle 

30,000 head

30,000 A.U.

Modification of construction and operating permit

Modification of NPDES permit coverage

 

S1/2, Section 12, T14N, R8E

N1/2, Section 13, T14N, R8E

Saunders

 









 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sobota Farms LLC is expanding on an existing DEQ swine livestock permit from 4,800 head operation with an additional 200 head for a total of 5,000 head or 2,000 A.U. (June 13, 2016)

Mead Cattle Company is proposing to build two additional earthen waste storage lagoons to provide additional storage of liquid manure (see attached sheet) (June 10, 2016).

 

2. GROUND WATER PROGRAMS
2.a. DECOMMISSIONED WELL PROGRAM
2.a.1. Well Estimates
Rationale

No new wells have been reviewed and approved by Gottschalk for decommissioning since the last Committee meeting.

 

2.a.2. Plugged Wells
Rationale

No wells have been plugged, reviewed, and ready for cost share payment approval this month.

2.b. LOWER PLATTE NORTH NRD GROUND WATER STUDIES
2.b.1. Elkhorn Loup Model (ELM)
Rationale

No new updates.

 

2.b.2. Eastern Nebraska Water Resources Assessment (ENWRA)
Rationale

ENWRA is currently working on AEM flights, installation of monitoring wells, test hole drilling, and summer sampling of monitoring wells for several NRD's.

 

2.c. NEW MONITORING WELLS
Rationale

Of the eight (older) loggers from 2006 and 2007, three have now been replaced.  These loggers were expected to function for 7-8 years and have exceeded this time.  Both MUD and UNL have had to likewise start replacing their older loggers.  

Downey Drilling has been working on drilling and installation of three new monitoring wells.  Weather-permitting they should complete the work at both sites:  Dodge County, east of Ames (NB-1) – shallow well 25’ depth and deeper well 240’ depth;  Saunders County, west of Malmo (P-3) 495’ depth.    We hope to put the cost of drilling and installing these monitoring wells on the current fiscal year budget for FY15-16.  New loggers have been ordered for the new monitoring wells, but cables will not be ordered until the wells are completed.

2.d. FERTILIZER SPILL
Rationale

E.   AURORA COOPERATIVE Fertilizer/Herbicide Spill, 052316-BG-1849

On May 23, 2016, an Aurora Fertilizer semi-truck and trailer upset at the corner of county roads 31 and P in Saunders County (approximately four miles east of Bruno).  The Saunders County Sheriff contacted the Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality [NDEQ].  NDEQ personnel involved in the investigation:  Brian Gorman, Dave Schumacher, Greg Michl, Jeremy Hammen, Kirk Morrow, and Ryan Chapman.  Schumacher made contact with area landowners who had wells down-gradient from the spill site.  Tim Creger of Nebraska Department of Agriculture was also consulted. 

Aurora Cooperative provided the following information regarding this event:

  • 250-gallon tote of Aatrex (Atrazine) – 15 gallons spilled
  • 250-gallon tote of Acuron (Atrazine, Metolachlor, Bicyclopyron, Mesotrione) – 0 gallons spilled
  • 250-gallon tote of Durango (Glyphosate) – 150 gallons spilled
  • Two 250-gallon totes of Instinct Nitrogen Stabilizer – 28 gallons spilled
  • Two 2,500-gallon tanks of 32-0-0 liquid nitrogen fertilizer – 2,916 gallons spilled

Aurora Cooperative hauled the contaminated soil to the Butler County Landfill.

Oaklund met with two landowners, Galen Jambor and Jim Kubik, to collect water samples from their wells.  The nitrate-nitrogen level in these samples was low:  Jambor’s domestic well (house) 0.23 ppm; Jambor stock well 0.42 ppm; Kubik domestic (G-175517) 0.28 ppm.  As per discussions with Jambor and Kubik, Oaklund will contact them for follow-up water sample from their wells in mid-July.

 

3. SURFACE WATER PROGRAMS
3.a. STATE LAKES, FOR THE WEEK OF
3.a.1. Bacteria Sampling
Rationale

Week of June 20th, 2016

Bacteria

THREE LAKES tested high for E. coli bacteria this week. E. coli levels measured above 235 colonies/100 ml of sample are considered a higher risk for illness when swimming.  Considering the more rapid changes in bacteria conditions, signs are not posted with these higher levels although we want people to be aware and use their own judgment on their use.

  • Cub Creek Lake #12A in Jefferson County
  •  Lewis and Clark Reservoir in Knox County
  •  Valentine Mill Pond in Cherry County

 

3.a.2. Toxic Algae
Rationale

Week of June 20th, 2016

Toxic Algae

ONE LAKE is on “Health Alert” this week. It is DEQ policy that any lake that has microcystin levels over the established criterion of 20 ppb will be placed on “Health Alert” Status until such time that it has tested below 20 ppb for two continuous weeks. If a lake is under a Health Alert, signs will be posted recommending people avoid full body contact activities such as swimming, wading, skiing, jet skiing, etc. Non-contact activities such as boating, fishing, and camping are OK.  

  • Harlan Lake in Harlan County

 

4. OTHER
4.A. NARD HELP FOR HUSKER HARVEST DAYS
Rationale

Husker Harvest Days

NARD is looking for volunteers during Husker Harvest Days on September 13th-15th.  The deadline to sign up is Friday, July 29th.  The shifts are 3 hours and the roles are tree give-a-ways, greeters, floaters (answer questions and retrieve trees from cooler), and Native Prairie Outreach Display.  The current sign-up sheet is attached.  Please let Desirae know if you are interested in signing up to volunteer.

4.b. LPNNRD WATER PROGRAMS BUDGET FY16-17
Rationale

Review of Water Programs budget for FY16-17.

 

4.c. GMDA
Rationale

GMDA has two websites: one on the LPNNRD server maintained by Angle and the other on GoDaddy.com which is the wikiGMDA site.  The person maintaining the wikiGMDA site will be leaving, so this information should be transferred to the LPNNRD site or placed on another commercial site.

 

4.d. 2016 SUMMER INTERNS
Rationale

The three summer interns passed the Natural Resources Ground Water Technician [NRGWT] test and have received their license.

4.e. COMMENTS FROM THE PUBLIC
Rationale

Staff members Karen Rezac and Cassi Deerson also attended the Water Committee meeting.

 

With no further business the Committee adjourned at 6:40 pm.